Freedom of speech · Indigenous Australians

Freedom of speech under siege

As the Andrew Bolt and QUT case had shown previously, section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act is the great Trojan horse of modern Australia, as it subtly yet meaningfully moves to chip away at our great democratic tradition.

The legislation’s most recent victim in Bill Leak, demonstrates the trivial, squabbling mess that we Australians have become: a people more concerned about accommodating the feelings of some at the detriment of the majority.

This petty debacle began 3 months ago, when Bill Leak published a cartoon in the Australian critical of failing family structure and poor male leadership within Indigenous communities.

This cartoon was constructed and released to the public, as seen below.

Leak cartoon

As the father is oblivious to his son’s name, the cartoon is depicting Indigenous fathers to be unreliable, absent and falling short in their responsibilities to raise their sons in an appropriate manner.

However, this portrayed predicament of a lack of male guidance for young Aboriginal Australians, considering higher levels of Indigenous incarceration, is an unfortunate yet truthful reality across the country.

Further, it is reasonable to suggest that Indigenous fathers’ absence in their children’s lives inflicts considerable harm to their development, as I have personally observed on several occasions.

As such, being able to freely discuss these issues prevalent in Indigenous communities, is of substantive importance.

And for helping to expose this great tragedy facing Indigenous Australia, what was the treatment granted towards Bill Leak?

Instead of reward for his bravery, the tax- payer funded Humans Rights commission launched a complaint against the cartoons, citing a breach of the Racial Discrimination Act and requesting that these cartoons be banned.

Given section 18C states:  “It is unlawful for a person to do an act, otherwise than in private, if: the act is reasonably likely, in all the circumstances, to offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate another person or a group of people… because of their race, colour or national or ethnic origin”, it seems forseeable for the pursued legal action to be successful in its case against Bill Leak.

This is because the law in its current form seeks to punish those that express different or dissenting views to the politically correct establishment, who aim to impose their will upon the rest of society for their own kingly purposes.

Therefore, the fate of cartoonist Bill Leak, may be beyond any of our wishes or otherwise best intentions.

Thus, what is now of the utmost importance, is that public opinion and momentum moves towards pressuring the Federal government, to repeal this egregious law.

Never again should an individual similar to Bill Leak, be subjected to any legal pressures whatsoever, for bringing the issues which matter to the public’s attention.

Even more so if these issues are controversial, as the moment when freedom of speech delves into taboo or sensitive subjects, is when the strength of the best democracies are measured.

The classic liberals and free thinkers that gave birth to the West in its democratic form, must be rolling their graves at this modern era’s depravities.

But if there were any historical quote that could remedy our society’s problem with free speech, the words of John Stuart Mill provide wisdom to cherish.

“If all mankind minus one were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind”.

Leave a Reply